Sex Role In Childhood

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate October 2001

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Sex Role in Childhood Social role is the social expectation about how someone should be act in his or her social position. Sex role is the social expectation about what men and women should do or be like. There are rules about the way men and women ought to be. Each of us learns these rules as we grow up, and they can have major impact on our personalities and behaviours.

Before a child is born, the parents would have know what they want their sons and daughter to be like, and they begin to communicate those expectations to their children during infancy. Little boys are likely to be dressed in blue and to have bedrooms that are decorated in blue. On the other hand, little girl are more likely to be dressed in pink, to wear jewelry, and to have rooms that are pink. Although both boys and girls are given construction toys, books and stuffed animals, boys more often have trucks and cars, and girls more often have dolls and toy furniture.

Parents continue to encourage what they consider to be sex-appropriate activities and interest throughout the childhood. Message about the meaning of masculinity and femininity also come from teachers, the media, and many other sources. In general, boys are taught to "get ahead" and "stay cool". They are encouraged to be ambitious and assertive and are discouraged to express their weakness and their tender feelings. In contrast, girls learn to be more submissive and dependent. They are taught to be polite. They also are expected to be tender whether with their dolls or with baby sister and brothers.

Sex role learning is not a passive process on the part of the child. Once the child learns his or her sex, they would actively seek clues about how...

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